Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Personal Best

It feels good to stand on the podium and enjoy a moment of recognition. Even if it is about waste. The GMIC' Sustainable Meetings Conference, Colorado Convention Center, MeetGreen, and conference participants deserve a round of applause for a 97% diversion rate during this month's conference. A personal best for all involved I believe.

The judges scores are in with 12% of the waste generated going to recycling and 85% to the compost bin. A mere 3% went to the landfill.


Enough Already!

Alright, I know you are tired of hearing about water bottle savings. Bear with me...during GMIC we were able to track the cost of using sponsored water bottles and water stations instead of individual bottled water so I wanted to show you the actual results.

GMIC participants used eleven 5-gallon jugs, which is the equivalent of 7,040 ounces at a cost of $634.38.

For the same water consumption in 16 ounce bottles it would have been 440 bottles x $4.58 inclusive or $2,015.20. Resulting in a savings of $1380.82 for a conference of 225 people or just over $6 a person.

HOWEVER – this means that by filling up their own water bottles we provided, the average water consumption was the equivalent of only two bottled waters per person over three days. If individual bottles had been available, our experience has been that attendees would have taken more than one bottle each day. So if each attendee had taken just one bottle each day the total could have been as high as 675 bottles or $3,091.50.

A sponsorship opportunity and a cost savings. Case closed...I promise!

Monday, February 15, 2010

You Should Have Been There

For those of you who weren't able to attend the Sustainable Meetings Conference last week, here is a great recap by Glenn Hasek of Green Lodging News! http://www.greenlodgingnews.com/Content.aspx?id=4382

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Green Event Tip of the Week #9

When the shoe is on the other foot and your organization is considering sponsoring a meeting or event, remember your good reputation is on the line. You will probably want to ask a few questions of the event organizers.

Our resident sponsorship expert, Mary Peters, has put together a quick list of questions you should be asking about green practices before opening your wallet

1) Do the organizers have sustainable policies? What are they?
2) Is the event being planned using green meeting guidelines?
3) Are the results of these efforts being measured?
4) Is the event being audited by a third-party?
5) Have the organizers calculated the carbon footprint?
6) What have they done to minimize the footprint?
7) How do they plan to measure and report on the environmental savings?
8) Will the media be alerted?

Spend your sponsorship dollars wisely!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Pushing the Envelope

Paul Salinger, Oracle, talks about sustainability and events on the large scale of Oracle OpenWorld in the February 2010 issue of Smart Meetings. http://smartmeetings.com/articles/an-insider-s-look-at-event-sustainability

"Some of the event’s notable accomplishments include:
-Diverting an estimated 140 tons of material from landfill.
-Sourcing 60% of food items from within a 100 mile radius of San Francisco.
-Reducing ground shuttles by 30% of peak usage, reducing emissions by 18,000 lbs of carbon dioxide and fuel use by 800 gallons.
-Total energy use and emissions avoided through purchasing decisions amounted to 1,146,130 mega joules and 120,073 lbs of CO2.
-This is enough energy to power 12 American homes per year, and the emissions
equivalent of removing 11 cars from the road for a full year.
-5% of signs were reused from 2008 and 37% of signs used in 2009 will be reusable for future events.
-A net cost savings of $800,000 through reduction and reuse."

Now that doesn't happen without the commitment of many vendors, suppliers and hard working Oracle staff. And in the article, Paul gives credit to all who rightfully deserve it. But, having worked on this project, I know without the passion, values and commitment of Paul Salinger it wouldn't have been possible. His leadership and enthusiasm not only enroll you, but make you want to join him on the journey where he is always asking the team, "How can we take this to a higher level? What's next? How can this improve our organization globally?"

Thanks, Paul, you inspire us!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The Gift of Giving

Barbara Scofidio, Editor of Corporate Meetings & Incentives, is passionate about giving back to the community. She has started a microsite that's a resource for planners who want to incorporate giving back into their meetings and incentives. To say it has lots of useful ideas, tips, how to’s, case studies, is a vast understatement. This is the "go to", one-stop shop with loads of links to the resources and experts to help you along the way. http://meetingsnet.com/give-back/

The power of an individual--fueled by passion--strikes again. Thanks, Barbara!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Meet Me in Denver!

Looking forward to seeing many of you in Denver next week at the Sustainable Meetings Conference http://www.sustainablemeetingsconference.com/

If you haven't registered yet, it isn't too late. Registration numbers are up and we are looking forward to a thought-provoking, enlightening and fun conference. Lots of learning too (the Leader's Track has given us homework so we can jump right in).

Make sure you say hello and let me know your thoughts on my pretentious musings--I am always interested in learning what I should cover!